Hi!
I'm Nicole. I am a wife, mother, shop owner on Mackinac Island, and lover of handmade. The little things and little moments inspire me. Follow me on my blog as I write about shop news, my travels, island life and motherhood.
Nicole
xo.

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little luxuries

We are so excited that the First Day of Spring is on Thursday, March 19th! The time change with spring forward was confusing for everyone's schedules, but now that the boys and I are finding the new rhythm, we love that it is lighter later and a little bit warmer for us to be able to play outside after school!
Soon, we will start the commute back up to Mackinac Island for a new season at our favorite place! I am excited that John will be older this summer and will be able to keep up with the boys a little bit more! We've started a Spring Bucket List and here are a few things on the list!
1. Play with Sidewalk Chalk! Once the sidewalks are dry, the boys will love to be able to create art outside!
2. Plant Flowers. This is probably only on my bucket list, but the boys will like to play with the dirt while I plant the flowers! There is something about looking out your front window and seeing beautiful and colorful flowers each morning!
3. Fly a Kite. The boys love doing this on Mackinac Island at Windemere Point. It's one of their favorite Island activities when it's nice outside, so I know they are anxious to get back to flying their kites!
4. Decorate Easter Eggs. I feel like I just wrote this blog here about our Easter Traditions. I can't believe how time flies and that we will soon be celebrating Easter again!
5. Have a picnic. One of our favorite family actiivities is to have a park (with provisions from Doud's Market and Deli!) in Marquette Park. The boys love to run around after they have finished eating and I love to just look out and see the water, the beautiful flowers and people biking by! 
Spring time is a time of newness - especially with a new season on Mackinac upon us. But there's also so much newness in the air, in the flowers, and just in a feeling of the cold winter ending, where now we can spend so much more time in the sunshine outside! I'm so excited for spring this year, to do more with the boys outside and to be back on Mackinac working for another great season! 
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New Pieces Available at Little Luxuries!

If you’ve been looking at the online shop this winter, you’ve probably noticed the growing selection of fun and trendy clothing! 

Little Luxuries will never be a clothing store, but we do like to carry a selection of stylish sweaters, cute t-shirts and similar accessories. Since we don’t have a dressing room, we work to provide you with clothing selections where you don’t need to try something on - and if you do, it can simply slip over what you are wearing.  

Here’s a round up of some of the new pieces that have entered the shop! 

  1. The Dani T-Shirt: Rayon spandex t-shirt features V-neckline, short sleeves, side slits and curved hem. This stylish t-shirt comes in four different designs!
  2. Greer Striped Hoodie: French terry hoodie features drawstring neckline, cotton ribbed sleeve openings and curved hem. 
  3. Memphis Cocoon Cardigan: Comfy acrylic knit cardigan features dolman sleeves with ribbed cuffs and curved cocoon hem. It comes in three different colors: blue, cream and gray.
  4. Noah Jersey Top: Viscose jersey knit top features long sleeves, front chest pocket, high-low hem with side vents and back pleat channel.  
  5. Dixon T-Shirt: Super soft French terry t-shirt features cuffed short sleeves and side slits at hem. It comes in three different designs! 

We are so excited about these new offerings that are now live in the shop and will be available in the storefront when we open in May! 

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Hey guys! I hope your getting through the winter blues okay. I know February can be a tough month, especially in Michigan with not many sunny days. Our family is trying to stay healthy. I've been working hard at that. Baths with Epsom salt almost every night, I diffuse Doterra Breathe oil for Louie and Tommy and I run humidifiers in both of their rooms. The humidifiers really make a difference! Louis, our oldest gets cold easily, like myself. I try to keep away from dairy as much as possible as that causes inflammation and I try to cook at home most of the time. As well as diffusing Doterra's On Guard oil in the kitchen area and disinfecting tables and chairs and the bathrooms often. What kinds of things do you do this time of year to stay healthy? We also drink lots of water! I don't let the boys drink anything else. Call me crazy, haha, but the extra sugar isn't needed, especially for growing little ones. 
Nicole Doud
I wanted to get a little personal in this blog post. During the winter months, it can be a big transition from working non-stop April-October. You really have to stay focused and motivated. I also have time to think. I think about my vision of the stores, I wonder sometimes if staying home with the boys is a better option. I almost have too much time to think! 
Nicole Doud
Retail can be sticky, anywhere. I've learned over the last 12 years, whether you are in high school or you are middle aged, the unkindness doesn't go away. That is one big thing that I am very surprised by as I get older. Looking back to my high school days, I never imagined the drama that exists the older you get. It's in the work place, friendships, marriages, and so on. This makes me really sad to see this in our world. For me, I have to have a positive outlet. I can only surround myself with positive people, I can only hire people that are hard working and kind, and I turn to motivational quotes or podcasts to keep myself in the right lane, the happy lane. 
I opened Little Luxuries when I was 23 years old. I'm sure this did not make other island business owners very happy. The new girl to Mackinac opening a gift shop on Main Street. I tried not to pay attention to the side chatter, I put my head down and I did the work. Andrew as my support team and yes, he was nervous about me opening a business on my own; I reassured him everything will be fine. I never once felt like I wasn't going to make it. I just worked and did what I knew I had to do to make customers happy and made sure bills were paid. In the business world, there is a lot of competition, which is normal, especially on a tiny island. I truly believe if you work hard, stay focused on your dreams and not anyone else's, good things will happen.
Nicole Doud
You probably wonder why I am writing about this today...I guess it just makes me sad to think about all the negativity in this world and the unique ideas that are taken so often and used again by someone else. I hope my blog post today makes you think about kindness (as it is Kindness Month) and being true to yourself. So many of us assume so much about other people. Nobody knows what anyone is going through behind closed doors. We are all trying to make life work. My advice from my own personal experience in business and living in a small town, is to stay true to YOU, follow your dreams, work hard and stay unique. 
I hope your week is a happy, healthy and productive one. 
Nicole
xoxo.
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Doud BoysDoud BoysDoud Boys
September has been off to a busy week for us here in the Doud household! Louis has started kindergarten, with Tommy in Pre-K! With these big changes of the boys in school, we are commuting over to Mackinac Island, while having Petoskey as our home base. This is the first year that we have ever done this, so we are learning a change of pace this fall until the shops close down at the end of October.
The temperatures have dropped drastically since Labor Day, with the highs in the 60s during the day and it getting down to the low 50s / high 40s at night! At this rate, it is going to be a very cold fall.
Summer was wonderful on the island, as usual! The boys had a bucket list that we checked things off of, which included visiting Fort Mackinac, horse back riding lessons, the Watercolor Cafe and a few other Mackinac Island favorites.
Heading into fall, I’m excited for cozy weather, hot chai tea lattes, the colors changing and the slower pace of life on Mackinac Island. As always, thank you for your support of Little Luxuries, The Artists Market and Canvas and Paddle.
Xoxo,
Nicole
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Banana Muffin
Happy Saturday! With the weather becoming cooler on Mackinac Island, I was able to turn on the oven and make the boys a special breakfast treat of Banana Muffins with chocolate chips that they all just loved!
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 bananas
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 egg
1/2 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt
1 tablespoon unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Mash bananas and mix with honey, olive oil, egg, yogurt, milk. Mix all dry ingredients together and add to banana mixture. 
Place batter in greased muffin tin. Cook at 350 for 20 minutes! 
Going into the new school year, I know that the boys will love having these as a special treat! I hope you enjoy!
Xoxo
Nicole
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